Canada's Obligations at International Criminal Law

Posted: 11 Jan 2002

See all articles by Patrick Macklem

Patrick Macklem

University of Toronto - Faculty of Law


Although conventional international law declares certain discrete acts associated with terrorism to constitute crimes of universal jurisdiction, international law - long stymied by the objection that "one person's terrorist is another's freedom fighter" - has struggled with the task of defining terrorism itself. By defining terrorism and declaring it to be an international crime, Canada's anti-terrorism legislation authorizes domestic prosecution of terrorist activity regardless of where and when it occurs and regardless of the national identity of perpetrator or victim. As domestic legislatures and courts in Canada and elsewhere increasingly turn their attention to what constitutes terrorism, their iterative efforts may eventually assist in promoting sufficient consensus to warrant a more integrated international approach coupled with international enforcement mechanisms.

Keywords: terrorism, international crimes, universal jurisdiction

JEL Classification: K33, K14, H56

Suggested Citation

Macklem, Patrick, Canada's Obligations at International Criminal Law. Available at SSRN:

Patrick Macklem (Contact Author)

University of Toronto - Faculty of Law ( email )

78 and 84 Queen's Park
Toronto, Ontario M5S 2C5
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